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Thread: nursing trouble from the begening, please help (baby 7week)

  1. #1

    Default nursing trouble from the begening, please help (baby 7week)

    this is my first post, and I am excited to see that there is a forum out there exclusivly for my problem.

    I just had my first baby on June 8th. I want to nurse him but we have had problems since day one. I had what I suppose was a very normal labor we went to the hospital around 10:00am they said I was 5cm going on 6 and at 6:30pm my little Dominic was born. I did not have an epidural and Dominic actually got a 10 on his apgar test. We tried to nurse right away. He was wide awake and the nurses helped me but even after trying for about 40-50 mins I could not get him to suck at the breast. Frankly I was falling asleep holding him so I handed him off to his addoring fans (daddy, uncle and gramma) so I could try to nap.

    He roomed with us, but I never could get him to eat well, he slept deeply and I had a horible time getting him to awaken to eat even with the lactation consultants help. Even if I managed to get him awake with my nipple in his mouth he would not suck. Things deteriorated from there until Fri morning around 3:00 am he had been crying all night I tried for three hours straight to get him to latch and nurse but he would just cry around my breast, finally I was crying he was crying and one of the nurses brought us a nipple shield it was like a miricle he finally sucked and went to sleep.

    After we went home I nursed him every 2 to 3 hours nursing him took about an hour to an hour and fifteen mins. His first Dr appt was on the tues after our fri discharge so in five days and he had lost a full pound going from his birth weight of 7lb 9 oz, to 6lb 9 oz.

    The dr schedualed us for a weight check about a week later and he had made it back to 6lb 15oz. But then his weight gain basicly slowed to a crawl. I nursed him every 2 to 3 hours but he would go 4 hours at night, but his nursing time had gone to about 40mins to an hour before we would just get to a point where he will not suck anymore.

    I take him once a week to a lactation support group at the hosital on tuesdays. On tues, june 28th, (three weeks old) he still had not made it back to his birth weight. The lactation consultant said I needed to get him off the nipple shield and told us to not use it anymore. For two days we fought to get him to eat he just wouldn't suck and would cry at my breast, I used compression and basicly was just squezzing the milk into his mouth. Finally right before his dr appt on thurs june 30, I had a special meeting with the lactation consultant and he had a breakthrough and actually latched well and nursed at both breasts, she weight him and said a got three oz. (I wonder now if that was a fluke because he really hadn't been nursing and I was super full) I took him to his dr on the thurs june 30th and he weighed 7lb.

    We went on vacation for about a week I felt like we were doing better and I felt great about being off the sheild, his nursing time had gone down to about 20 to 25mins every 2 1/2 hours 4 hours at night I thought he was nursing more effectivly without the shield but maybe not.

    He was really fussy to the point of being frantic at times on the mon.tues,weds after we got home. Thurs he had another dr appt (july 14) he still only weighed 7lb 3oz he was now 5 weeks old. After his appt my mom bought me a baby scale so I could see how much he was getting to eat, the scale is accurate to a half an oz.

    I got it out fri morning and saw he had only eaten 1/2oz in half an hour, I nused him again for another half hour but he didn't get a messurable amount of milk. I immediatly started supplimenting him 1oz after he nursed but quickly increased to 2oz, at first we gave him milk from the freezer that I had pumped when he wouldn't nurse without the shield, but that quickly ran out, now he is getting formula. (Enfamil newborn) the lactation consultant weighed him four days later and he had made it to 7lb 15.5 oz.

    He is a completely different baby now he is fussy a lot less often and he does not get to the point were he will scream and claw his face anymore. But I desperatly want to get my milk to a point where we can throw out the bottle.

    In summery
    june 8,born 7 lb 9oz; problems feeding
    june 10 intrudesed to nipple shield
    june 14 weight 6lb 9oz
    june 24 weight 6lb 15oz
    june 28 stopped using nipple shield
    june 3o weight 7lb
    july 12 advised to take fenugreek
    july 13 started taking 6 fenugreek, (2 3X day)
    july 14 weight 7lb 3oz,
    july 15
    baby getting about .5-1oz per feeding, start giving 2oz from bottle after nursing started taking 12 fenugreek (4 3X day) started pumping five mins each breast after each feeding getting 1/10 to 2/10oz from each breast.
    july 16 messured baby taking .5 to 1 oz
    july 17
    messured baby taking 1 to 1.5oz increased pumping after feeding to five to ten mins each breast.
    july 18 messured baby taking 1 to 2oz
    july 19 messured baby taking 1 to 2oz, weight 7lb 15oz
    july 20 messured baby taking 1 to 2oz, took break from pumping going down to three times a day to let nipples heal.
    july 21 baby taking less formula after nursing sometimes only 2.5oz

    I am almost out of Fenugreek with no further increase in milk supply, and I don't know were to go from here. My milk supplie seems to vary through the day if we go 4hrs like at night he usually gets closer to 2oz but durning the day if he only makes it just over two hrs he may only get barly an oz. About once a day he seems satisfied with just nursing but more often he now wants more formula from the bottle (maybe growth spurt?) sometimes he will now eat 3 oz or a bit more before he is satissfied from the bottle, and that is on top of what he gets at the breast.
    I still can not get more than 1/10-2/10oz with pumping after he nurses. I have the medela swing pump (electric)
    He will not continue to suck after he stops getting milk from the breast no matter how hard I try to get him to, and he will not accept the straw suppliment thing that is supposed to give him milk while he sucks at the breats, he refuses to suck with it in his mouth. The lac. consultants say his latch is good, and I have no real pain. I also do swich nursing to try to keep him sucking longer, at each nursing session I offer each breast twice. And I have been using the breastflow bottle to try to slow down his feeding at the bottle, so he spits up less.

    I read on this forum something about power pumping so this afternoon while he naped a pumped for an hour alternating between breasts every ten mins. I got about 1 oz. How offten should I do this, knowing it will compromise how much milk he gets when he nurses next. And is it better to do this once or twice a day, than to pump after nursing? I could try both but I don't know if I could keep it up because the pump makes me sore after a while.

    I hope this is not too long. I'm just hoping someone can help me figure out what is going wrong and how to fix it. Thank you so much for your time.

  2. #2
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    19,895

    Default Re: nursing trouble from the begening, please help (baby 7week)

    My daughter needs to go down for a nap so this'll be quick- I just want to reassure yo that you can do this, and we'll do everything we can to help!
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

  3. #3
    Join Date
    May 2006
    Posts
    19,895

    Default Re: nursing trouble from the begening, please help (baby 7week)

    Okay, baby's down for her nap! So, first of all: congratulations on the new baby and on making it through the first difficult weeks. So many women face lower hurdles than you and quit nursing, so you should be really proud of yourself for getting this far!

    My first thought is that you would probably really benefit from a visit with another LC, preferably an IBCLC. I know you've already seen a LC, but all LCs have different tricks and one may offer a solution or pick up on a problem that another missed. I would ask the LC if she rents baby scales- the scale your mom got you is probably not good enough for the way you are using it. You want something that is accurate to a 1/10th of an oz, because the difference between a good feeding and a poor one can be 1/2 an oz. I am also thinking that maybe you want to see a pediatric otolaryngologist, and have your baby evaluated for tongue-tie. A tongue tie could potnetially explain why your baby seems to have trouble with nursing.

    You are definitely on the right path with the pumping. If the baby is not nursing effectively, you do need to pump. The Medela Swing is a good pump, but you may do better with a hospital-grade rental. The keys to increasing output when pumping are 1) to use a good pump with correctly sized shields and 2) to use it frequently. Pumping after every feeding or every 2 hours during the day and every 3 at night is ideal. Power pumping should help. I would not be overly concerned about "stealing" milk from the baby's next feeding if you power pump during his nap. Yes, there is a chance that you will be emptier than usual when he wakes, and that is a drawback, but it may be worth the price of increased yield over time. You are training your body to produce more, and just like training for an athletic event, you're going to need to work at it consistently in order to see improvement.

    Fenugreek may help. I suggest looking for fenugreek seed- it's about $4/lb online or in grocery stores- look for "methi" amongst the Indian spices and "hilbeh" in the Middle Eastern ones. You may also want to speak to your doctor or midwife about prescription drugs which can help you increase supply. Reglan (available in the US) and Domperidone (Canada, or from compounding pharmacies in the US) are anti-nausea drugs which can increase milk supply as a side-effect. Both have additional side-effects and are not for all moms, so talk to your health-care provider before using either one.

    Finally, is suggest seeing your HCP for some tests. Thyroid problems, retained placenta fragments, and PCOS are conditions which can cause issues with milk supply. It makes sense to have those ruled out/in.
    Last edited by @llli*mommal; July 22nd, 2011 at 11:17 AM.
    Coolest thing my big girl said recently: "How can you tell the world is moving when you are standing on it?"
    Coolest thing my little girl sang recently: "I love dat one-two pupples!"

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